The Best Ways to Fly to Ireland with Points and Miles

Burren Way Clare Ireland

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Situated west of Great Britain, Ireland is an island in western Europe with its capital located in Dublin. The country is home to delicious Guinness beer and incredible medieval castles. Ireland is nicknamed “Emerald Isle” due to its green landscape that’s evident in any picture you see of the country.

Ireland has 2 major airports that you can fly into from the U.S.: Dublin Airport (DUB) in northwest Ireland and Shannon Airport (SNN) in southwest Ireland. You also have the option to connect at these airports and then onto one of the regional airports in the country.

Best Programs to Use to Book Flights

What makes booking award flights to Ireland great is that you have tons of options. Not only can you fly nonstop from the U.S., but you also have the option to connect through Europe.

Oneworld, SkyTeam, and Star Alliance partner airlines all fly to Ireland from the U.S. In addition, you have airlines outside of the major alliances that will help you get there.

As you review each flight option, note that the award pricing shown is for round-trip flights. Some award programs allow you to book one-way flights, which will provide even more flexibility. With that said, let’s dive in!

Air Canada Aeroplan

TAP Portugal a330-900neo business class
TAP Portugal new a330-900neo features a sleek business class product. Image Credit: Executive Traveller
Cabin ClassStar Alliance Airlines Miles CostTaxes & Fees
Economy60,000$87+
Business110,000-115,000$87+

Aeroplan is currently a stand-alone award program that will rejoin Air Canada in the near future. In the meantime, you’ll continue to be able to take advantage of one of the sweet spots in the program — flights between the U.S. and Europe.

Air Canada, Austrian Airlines, Brussels Airlines, LOT Polish, Lufthansa, SAS, Singapore Airlines, Swiss Air Lines, TAP Portugal, Turkish Airlines, and United Airlines offer flights between the U.S. and Europe.

For those looking for the most value, consider booking flights on LOT Polish, Singapore Airlines, TAP Portugal, Turkish Airlines, and United Airlines due to the cheaper taxes and fees.

Hot Tip: Air Canada, Austrian Airlines, Brussels Airlines, and Swiss Air Lines have high taxes and fees. Separately, you will only be able to book Singapore Airlines economy flights with Aeroplan miles.

When you’re ready to book a flight, here are a couple of examples of flights that you can book to Dublin (DUB):

  • Newark (EWR) – Dublin (DUB) for 110,000 Aeroplan miles in United Airlines business class
  • Chicago (ORD) – Lisbon (LIS) – Dublin (DUB) for 60,000 Aeroplan miles in TAP Portugal economy
  • Washington (IAD) – Dublin (DUB) for 110,000 Aeroplan miles in United Airlines business class

With enough Aeroplan miles in your account, you’ll want to follow these steps to book your flight:

  1. Search for flights on United Airlines.
  2. Confirm the same availability on Aeroplan.
  3. Book the award flight online.
  4. Pay the taxes and fees.

Earning Aeroplan Miles

It’s relatively easy to earn Aeroplan miles because the program partners with American Express, Capital One, and Marriott Bonvoy. Aeroplan also has a co-branded credit card that allows you to earn Aeroplan miles with your spend.

If you’re looking to transfer points from American Express, Capital One, and/or Marriott, the transfer times and transfer ratios will be different. Amex points transfer instantly at a 1:1 ratio, Capital One Miles transfer instantly at a 2:1.5 ratio, and Marriott point transfers take 7 days at a 3:1 ratio.

With Marriott, you’ll receive a 5,000-mile bonus with every 60,000 points that you transfer.

Bottom Line: Aeroplan is one of the top Star Alliance programs to use to book business class to Europe. The main things to take into account are the taxes and fees when flying certain airlines. 

Aer Lingus AerClub

Aer Lingus 757 Business Class
Aer Lingus 757 business class. Image Credit: Business Traveller
Cabin ClassANA Miles CostTaxes & Fees
Economy Off-Peak26,000$266+
Business100,000$266+

Aer Lingus is likely the first program many travelers think to use to book flights to Ireland. The good news is that during off-peak dates, the AerClub program offers competitive award prices, particularly for those who want to fly economy.

The Aer Lingus airline currency Avios is the same currency used by British Airways and Iberia. For flights between the U.S. and Ireland, you’ll want to book Aer Lingus flights on the Avios website.

Hot Tip: Book award flights during off-peak dates in the Aer Lingus award calendar, occurring during most of January, February, March, May, September, October, and November. 

With your travel dates picked out, consider booking these Aer Lingus flights:

  • Boston (BOS) – Dublin (DUB) for 26,000 Avios on Aer Lingus economy
  • New York (JFK) – Shannon (SNN) for 100,000 Avios on Aer Lingus business class
  • Chicago (ORD) – Dublin (DUB) for 100,000 Avios on Aer Lingus business class

The process to book Aer Lingus is straightforward:

  1. Search for flights on the Avios website.
  2. Book the award flight online.
  3. Pay the taxes and fees.

Earning Aer Lingus Avios (Miles)

Aer Lingus makes it easy to earn Avios because the airline partners with American Express and Chase where points both transfer instantly at a 1:1 ratio. You can also earn Avios by putting your spend on an Aer Lingus credit card or you can even combine your Avios from your British Airways and Iberia loyalty accounts.

Bottom Line: Aer Lingus offers one of the cheapest ways to fly between the U.S. and Ireland in economy. 

ANA Mileage Club

United New Polaris Business Class
Traveling in business class is one of the best ways to maximize your frequent flyer awards. Image Credit: United
Cabin ClassANA Miles CostTaxes & Fees
Economy55,000$87+
Business88,000$87+

Another Star Alliance program to keep your eye on is ANA Mileage Club. ANA has several high-value award flights that you can book including flights between the U.S. and Europe.

The 2 main drawbacks when using ANA miles is that ANA partner flights must be booked round-trip and fuel surcharges are passed on. With that said, there’s plenty of upside if you know which airline partner flights to book.

Hot Tip: It’s best to use United to search for Star Alliance award flights first. From there, it’ll be easier to search the ANA website with the award flights that you found on United. 

Below are a couple of options to consider when you have the required number of Mileage Club miles in your ANA account:

  • Washington (IAD) – Dublin (DUB) for 55,000 ANA miles in United business class
  • Houston (IAH) – Manchester (MAN) for 55,000 ANA miles in Singapore Airlines economy
  • Denver (DEN) – Newark (EWR) – Shannon (SNN) for 88,000 ANA in United business class

With the Singapore Airlines flight to Manchester, we recommend a couple of options to get all the way to Ireland. You can book a cheap cash flight between Manchester and Dublin or use 4,000 Avios to fly one-way during off-peak dates in Aer Lingus or British Airways economy.

For those of you with enough ANA miles, follow these steps to book your next award flight:

  1. Search for flights on United.
  2. Confirm the same availability on ANA.
  3. Book the flight online.
  4. Pay the taxes and fees.

Earning ANA Miles

ANA partners with American Express and Marriott Bonvoy, so the easiest way to earn ANA miles is to transfer your points from these programs to ANA. Unlike many airline programs, ANA doesn’t offer co-branded credit cards for the U.S. market.

If you have enough American Express and/or Marriott points to book a flight, the Amex point transfers take 2-3 days at a 1:1 ratio and Marriott point transfers take 7 days at a 3:1 ratio. With that said, below are the American Express credit cards that we recommend considering:

Recommended American Express Cards (Personal)

The Platinum Card® from American Express - There's currently a welcome bonus of 60,000 points after spending $5,000 in your first 3 months. This is our favorite card for getting into 1,200+ airport lounges worldwide (including Priority Pass) and we get about $2,700+ in value from the card every year.

Plus, get up to $200 in Uber credits annually ($15 per month and a $20 bonus in December) — and up to $200 in annual credit for airline incidental charges (e.g. baggage fees). For rates and fees of the Platinum Card, click here.
American Express® Gold Card - We love using this card as it earns 4x points at restaurants worldwide and 4x points at US supermarkets (up to $25,000; then 1x). There's no better card in our opinion if you eat out and/or shop at supermarkets regularly.

With a welcome bonus of 35,000 points after you spend $4,000 in your first 3 months and a $100 airfare credit per year, for many this is an easy addition to your wallet. For rates and fees of the Gold Card, click here.

Recommended American Express Cards (Business)

The Business Platinum Card® from American Express - Right now, there's a HUGE welcome bonus of up to 100,000 points. Earn 50,000 points after you spend $10,000 and an extra 50,000 after you spend an additional $15,000, on purchases within the first 3 months.

We get ~$5,525+ in value per year by leveraging many of the benefits & perks.

This is the best business card for lounge access as you'll get into 1,200+ airport lounges worldwide. For rates and fees of the Business Platinum, click here.
American Express® Business Gold Card - probably our favorite Amex business card because we earn 4x points across the top 2 select categories that we spend the most money in each month. The 4x points applies to the first $150,000 in combined purchases from these 2 categories each calendar year. This means you'll max out at a (whopping) 600,000 points per year. After that, you earn 1x. For rates and fees of the Business Gold Card, click here.
The Blue Business® Plus Credit Card from American Express - This is a simple card that earns you 2x points on any business purchase, up to $50,000 annually (then 1x). That makes for an easy 100,000 points per year! The card has no annual fee. For rates and fees of the Blue Business Plus, click here.

Bottom Line: If you’re looking to book one-way Star Alliance award flights, Aeroplan and United Airlines will provide you with this option. 

Asiana Airlines Asiana Club

Asiana Airlines A380 First Class Seat 2A - Cherag Dubash
Asiana A380 First Class Suites. Image Credit: Cherag Dubash
Cabin ClassAsiana Miles CostTaxes & Fees 
Economy50,000$87+
Business80,000$87+

Our third Star Alliance program to cover is Asiana Airlines Asiana Club. Asiana Airlines is based in South Korea and has an award program that typically doesn’t receive much coverage. That’s unfortunate because the program has a ton of value.

It’s important to note that a phone call is required to book Star Alliance partner airline flights. In addition, you’ll need to use the United website to search for flights as the Asiana website doesn’t allow you to search for Star Alliance flights.

Hot Tip: Asiana Airlines flights can be booked online but all Star Alliance partner flights require that you call Asiana to book the flight. 

If using Asiana miles makes sense for you, here’s a couple of Star Alliance flight options:

  • Newark (EWR) – Lisbon (LIS) – Dublin (DUB) for 50,000 Asiana miles in TAP Portugal business class
  • Chicago (ORD) – Dublin (DUB) for 80,000 Asiana miles in United business class
  • San Francisco (SFO) – Zurich (ZRH) – Shannon (SNN) in Swiss business class

Booking flights with Asiana isn’t the easiest, so use the steps below to help in the process:

  1. Search for flight award availability on United.
  2. Write down all the flight information.
  3. Call Asiana Airlines at 800-227-4262 between 8:30 a.m. – 5:30 p.m. PST on Monday-Friday.
  4. Book the flight over the phone.
  5. Pay the taxes and fees over the phone.

Earning Asiana Miles

Asiana Airlines only partners with Marriott Bonvoy so it can be challenging to earn Asiana Airlines miles. Point transfers take 10 days at a ratio of 3:1. Separately, you’ll receive a 5,000-mile bonus when transferring 60,000 Marriott points.

Here are the Marriott credit cards that we recommend:

Marriott Bonvoy Boundless™ Credit Card - Earn 75,000 bonus points after spending $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. Get automatic silver elite status each account anniversary year; and a free night award (valued up to 35,000 points) every year after account anniversary.
Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card - earn 75,000 bonus points when you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months of account opening. A solid card for business owners who will get complimentary Marriott Bonvoy silver elite status. Annual fee is $125. For rates and fees of the Bonvoy Business Card, click here.

British Airways Executive Club

Burren Way Clare Ireland
Image Credit: Pioneermedia via Unsplash
Cabin ClassBritish Airways Oneworld Cost Taxes and Fees
Economy41,500$88+
Business124,000$88+
First165,000$88+

British Airways Executive Club is a program many U.S. travelers are familiar with due to the ability to book American Airlines flights. British Airways uses a distance-based award chart and prices award flights on a segment basis. This means that connecting flights require additional miles. For flights between the U.S. and Ireland, you’ll want to fly American and Iberia due to the fuel surcharges when flying British Airways.

One of the main drawbacks of using the British Airways website is that it shows phantom American Airlines award space. Based on a recent experience, 15 American Airlines seats were shown on the British Airways website yet only 1 seat was available to be booked.

Hot Tip: British Airways is one of the best search engines to use for Oneworld award flights. Another option is to use the Qantas website. 

When you’re ready to make a trip to Ireland, consider flying one of these routes:

  • Charlotte (CLT) – Dublin (DUB) for 41,500 British Airways Avios in American Airlines economy
  • Philadelphia (PHL) – Shannon (SNN) for 41,500 British Airways Avios in American Airlines economy
  • Chicago (ORD) – Dublin (DUB) for 41,500 British Airways Avios in American Airlines economy

Booking flights with British Airways is pretty simple:

  1. Search for award availability on British Airways.
  2. Book the flight online.
  3. Pay the taxes and fees.

Earning British Airways Avios

It’s easy to earn British Airways Avios because the airline has partnerships with American Express, Chase, and Marriott Bonvoy. In addition, British Airways has a co-branded credit card that earns Avios (miles) directly with your spend.

For those looking to transfer Amex and/or Chase points, the points transfer instantly at a 1:1 ratio. Marriott point transfers take 24 hours at a 3:1 ratio. With every 60,000 Marriott points transferred, you’ll receive a 5,000-mile bonus.

If you’re looking to earn Chase points, consider applying for these credit cards that we recommend:

Recommended Chase Cards (Personal)

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card - This is our favorite beginners travel rewards card which has a 60,000 point bonus (highest ever) after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.

This sign up bonus is worth $750 in travel purchases (flights, hotels, car rentals etc) when you redeem your points through Chase's travel portal, which works like Expedia. The bonus alone could get you multiple round-trip flights or hotel stays.
Chase Sapphire Reserve® - Consider this premium card if you want to get into a lot of airport lounges. The current sign up bonus is 50,000 points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. You'll also get a $300 travel credit per year which wipes away a big chunk of the $450 annual fee.
Chase Freedom Unlimited® - A simple, no annual fee card that earns you a $150 bonus after you spend $500 in your first 3 months. Easy earning at 1.5% on all purchases. Just know that you won't get any travel benefits or the ability to earn bonus points with this card.

Recommended Chase Cards (Business)

Ink Business Preferred℠ Credit Card - This is our #1 recommended business card and comes with a whopping 80,000 sign up bonus after you spend $5,000 on purchases in the first 3 months after account opening. This bonus is worth $1,000 when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards for travel purchases (flights, hotels etc). Also, if you pay for your cell phone bill with this card, you can get up to $600 in cell phone insurance coverage per year.
Ink Business Cash℠ Credit Card - earn $500 bonus cash back after you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months after account opening. In addition, get up to 5% cash back on a range of business expenses such as office supply stores, internet, cable, and phone services. This is one of the best no annual fee business cards.

Bottom Line: We recommend calling British Airways before transferring points to book an American Airlines flight. It’s widely known that the award flights shown on British Airways do not match what is available to be booked. 

Etihad Guest

AA Inflight Service
Use Etihad miles to fly American Airlines business class. Image Credit: American Airlines
Cabin ClassEtihad Miles (American) Cost Taxes & Fees
Economy Off-Peak40,000$88+
Economy60,000$88+
Business100,000$88+
First125,000$338+

 

Cabin ClassEtihad Miles (Brussels) Cost Taxes & Fees
Economy44,000$522
Business88,000$522

Etihad is our first award program that’s not in a major airline alliance. With Etihad, you’re booking flights on its partner airlines that span the major airline alliances.

One of the main drawbacks of Etihad is that partner airline flights can’t be booked online. Fortunately, the Etihad agents are competent and will help you book flights over the phone.

Hot Tip: Etihad doesn’t allow you to book partner airline flights on its website. You’ll need to call Etihad Guest to book these flights. 

Note in the first example below you’ll need to book another flight between Brussels and Dublin as Brussels Airlines doesn’t fly between the 2 cities. The taxes and fees to fly Brussels Airlines are also substantially more expensive.

  • Washington, D.C. (IAD) – Brussels (BRU) for 88,000 Etihad miles in Brussels business class
  • Philadelphia (PHL) – Dublin (DUB) for 40,000 Etihad miles in American Airlines economy
  • Charlotte (CLT) – Dublin (DUB) for 100,000 Etihad miles in American Airlines business class

With the Brussels Airlines flight to Brussels, we recommend a cheap miles or points flight continuing on to Ireland.

Depending on the partner that you fly, the process to book flights will differ. Below are the steps we recommend:

  1. Search for American Airlines flights on British Airways.
  2. Search for Brussels Airlines flights on United.
  3. Write down all of the flight details.
  4. Call Etihad at 877-690-0767 to confirm award availability.
  5. Book the flight over the phone.
  6. Pay the taxes and fees over the phone.

Earning Etihad Guest Miles

Earning Etihad Guest miles is easy because the airline partners with American Express, Capital One, Citi, and Marriott Bonvoy. When points are earned in these programs, you can transfer them directly to Etihad to book an award flight.

If you decide to transfer points, keep these transfer ratios and transfer times in mind: American Express points transfer instantly at a 1:1 ratio, Capital One point transfers take 36 hours at 2:1.5 ratio, Citi point transfers take 6 days at a 1:1 ratio, and Marriott point transfers take 5 days at a 3:1 ratio.

Unfortunately, Etihad doesn’t have credit cards for the U.S. market, so earning points in these programs will be one of the easiest ways to obtain Etihad Guest miles.

For those of you wanting to earn Capital One Miles, here are the credit cards that we like:

Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card - This card is packed with a lot more benefits and perks. Earn a 50,000 mile sign up bonus (worth $500 toward travel) once you spend $3,000 on purchases within 3 months from account opening. We recommend this as a no-brainer card if you even semi regularly stay at hotels.
Capital One® VentureOne® Rewards Credit Card - This is an excellent card for those looking to earn 1.25x miles per $1 on every purchase. With a 20,000 mile sign up bonus (worth $200 toward travel) after spending $1,000 within the first 3 months and no annual fee, it's a strong choice.

Bottom Line: Using Etihad miles allows you to fly American Airlines at cheaper rates than you’d otherwise pay using your American Airlines miles. 

Iberia Avios

Iberia Business Class
Iberia business class. Image Credit: YouTube
Cabin ClassIberia Avios Cost (Iberia)Taxes and Fees
Economy Off-Peak42,500$121+
Business Off-Peak85,000$121+

Iberia is our second Oneworld airline member that you can use for flights to Europe. U.S. travelers are likely familiar with Iberia because you can use Iberia Avios (miles) to book American Airlines award flights.

One of the main drawbacks with Iberia is that American Airlines flights must be booked round-trip. However, for this redemption you’re flying Iberia so you have the option to book one-way flights if needed.

Hot Tip: British Airways and Iberia offer ways for you to book American Airlines award flights. With British Airways, you have more flexibility because you can book a one-way American Airlines flight. 

When weighing the fuel surcharges, award pricing, and routing, we recommend flying Iberia during its off-peak award dates.

  • Boston (BOS) – Madrid (MAD) – Dublin (DUB) for 42,500 Iberia Avios in Iberia economy
  • Chicago (ORD) – Madrid (MAD) – Dublin (DUB) for 85,000 Iberia Avios in Iberia business class
  • Miami (MIA) – Madrid (MAD) – Dublin (DUB) for 85,000 Iberia Avios in Iberia business class

If you’re ready to book a flight, these steps will help make the process easier:

  1. Search for Iberia flights on Iberia.
  2. Book the award flight online.
  3. Pay the taxes and fees.

Earning Iberia Avios (Miles)

You’ll have no problem earning Iberia Avios because the airline has partnerships with American Express, Chase, and Marriott Bonvoy. The points earned in these programs can be transferred directly to Iberia.

Transfer times and transfer ratios are always important to keep in mind as they will be different depending on the program that you use: American Express point transfers take 2 days at a 1:1 ratio, Chase points transfer instantly at a 1:1 ratio, and Marriott point transfers take 24-36 hours at a 3:1 ratio. With every 60,000 Marriott points that you transfer, you’ll receive a 5,000-mile bonus.

Another way to earn Iberia Avios is by putting your spend on its co-branded Chase credit card. By combining the Avios earned from its credit card with the transferable points from Amex, Chase, and Marriott, you’ll be well on your way to your next award flight.

Bottom Line: U.S. travelers should always consider flying Iberia to Europe during off-peak dates. Iberia offers one of the cheapest options for both economy and business class. 

Japan Airlines Mileage Bank

Cliffs of Moher Ireland
Image Credit: Hocraveiro via Unsplash
Cabin ClassJapan Airlines Cost (American)Taxes and Fees
Economy40,000$45+
Business80,000$45+
First100,000$45+

Yet another Oneworld member with award flight options to Ireland is Japan Airlines. What’s great about Japan Airlines is that you can fly to Ireland at competitive rates with low taxes and fees.

The main downside of using Japan Airlines miles to book these flights is that the miles are hard to earn. However, if you can find an avenue to earn them, you will unlock serious value.

Hot Tip: Japan Airlines uses a distance-based award chart. We recommend using Great Circle Mapper to calculate and confirm the distance of your flight before searching for award flights. 

American Airlines, British Airways, and Iberia are the airline partners with flights that you can book. We recommend flights like the ones below to reduce the taxes and fees you’ll see when flying British Airways:

  • Philadelphia (PHL) – Shannon (SNN) for 80,000 Japan Airlines miles in American Airlines business class
  • New York (JFK) – Madrid (MAD) – Dublin (DUB) for 50,000 Japan Airlines miles in Iberia economy
  • Dallas (DFW) – Charlotte (CLT) – Dublin (DUB) for 85,000 Japan Airlines miles in American Airlines business class

The steps below will likely be helpful when you’re ready to book an award flight:

  1. Search for flights on British Airways.
  2. Confirm the same award availability on Japan Airlines.
  3. Book the award flight online.
  4. Pay the taxes and fees.

Earning Japan Airlines Miles

Earning Japan Airlines miles is tough because the airline only has 1 partnership with Marriott Bonvoy. In addition, the U.S. market does not have access to co-branded Japan Airlines credit cards.

If you do have Marriott points and want to transfer them to Japan Airlines, the transfer time takes 2 days at a 3:1 ratio. Also, with every 60,000 Marriott points that you transfer, you’ll receive a 5,000-mile transfer bonus.

Bottom Line: Japan Airlines offers a great option to book Oneworld flights to Europe. The issue many have is earning enough Japan Airlines miles to book an award flight. 

Korean Air SKYPASS

Delta One Suites A350-900 seat 8B
Use Korean Air miles to fly  Delta One. Image Credit: Stephen Au
Cabin ClassKorean Air Cost Taxes and Fees
Economy50,000$232+
Business80,000$232+

For those of you looking to leverage the SkyTeam alliance, Korean Air is an interesting option. The South Korea-based airline has competitive rates to fly in both economy and business class to Ireland.

You’ll be using a zone-based award chart when flying SkyTeam airline partners. This means that it’ll cost the same number of miles to fly between the U.S. and Ireland, no matter the departing U.S. city.

Hot Tip: We recommend starting your award search on Air France, Delta, and KLM for SkyTeam award flights. 

Below are a couple of SkyTeam options when you have enough miles in your SKYPASS account:

  • New York (JFK) – Shannon (SNN) for 50,000 Korean Air miles in Delta economy
  • Detroit (DTW) – Paris (CDG) – Dublin (DUB) for 80,000 Korean Air miles in Air France business class
  • Atlanta (ATL) – Dublin (DUB) for 80,000 Korean Air miles in Delta business class

With Korean Air, the process to book award flights is as follows:

  1. Search for SkyTeam flights on Air France, Delta, or KLM.
  2. Write down all of your flight information.
  3. Confirm the same availability on Korean Air’s website or call Korean Air 800-438-5000 to confirm availability.
  4. Book the flight online or over the phone.
  5. Pay for taxes and fees.

Earning Korean Air SKYPASS Miles

Like Japan Airlines, Korean Air has only 1 transferable partner and that’s Marriott Bonvoy. What’s different about Korean Air is that U.S. residents can earn Korean Air miles from a co-branded Korean Air credit card.

For those of you looking to transfer Marriott points, the transfer ratio is 3:1 and points take 7 days to transfer. With every 60,000 points that you transfer, you’ll receive a 5,000-mile bonus.

Bottom Line: Korean Air will be one of your best SkyTeam options. We also recommend checking Air France, Delta, and KLM to see how many miles each airline program requires for your flight. 

Virgin Atlantic Flying Club

Temple Bar in Dublin Ireland
Image Credit: Diogopalhais via Unsplash
Cabin ClassVirgin Atlantic Cost Taxes & Fees
Economy60,000$47+
Business100,000$47+

Our last non-alliance airline to mention is Virgin Atlantic. Like Etihad, Virgin Atlantic has partnerships with individual airlines. Not all of the award rates are competitive, but flights to Europe are ones that you should consider.

For flights to Ireland, the airline partner you’ll fly is Delta. You’ll want to focus on the nonstop Delta flights as any connections require additional Virgin Atlantic miles.

Hot Tip: You may not be able to book all Delta flights on Virgin Atlantic. If you’re not able to book the flight, the process to book over the phone is easy. 

With Delta flights to Ireland, here are a couple of interesting flights to book:

  • Boston (BOS) – Dublin (DUB) for 100,000 Virgin Atlantic miles in Delta business class
  • New York (JFK) – Shannon (SNN) for 60,000 Virgin Atlantic miles in Delta economy
  • Atlanta (ATL) – Dublin (DUB) for 100,000 Virgin Atlantic miles in Delta business class

If your Delta destination shows up on Virgin Atlantic:

  1. Search for Delta on Virgin Atlantic.
  2. Book the flight online.
  3. Pay the taxes and fees.

If your destination doesn’t show up on Virgin Atlantic:

  1. Search for Delta on Air France, Delta, or KLM.
  2. Write down your flight information.
  3. Call Virgin Atlantic at 800-365-9500 to book the flight.
  4. Pay the taxes and fees.

Earning Virgin Atlantic Flying Club Miles

You’ll have no problem earning Virgin Atlantic miles because the airline partners with American Express, Chase, Citi, and Marriott Bonvoy. You can transfer points in these programs directly to Virgin Atlantic.

If you do have transferable points, here are the transfer ratios and transfer times: Amex point transfers take 1-2 days at a 1:1 ratio, Chase points transfer instantly at a 1:1 ratio, Citi point transfers take 2 days at a 1:1 ratio, and Marriott point transfers take 1 day at a 3:1 ratio. You’ll receive 5,000 bonus miles when transferring 60,000 Marriott points.

Another way to earn Virgin Atlantic miles is by spending on its co-branded credit cards. A combination of its credit cards and transferable points will ensure you have plenty of miles for your next flight to Ireland.

See our article on the best Citi credit cards if you’re looking to earn Citi ThankYou Points.

Bottom Line: Air New Zealand, ANA, and Delta are some of the top Virgin Atlantic airline partners that will help you to receive value with your Virgin Atlantic miles. 

Final Thoughts

Ireland is a great place to visit, particularly during the U.S. summer months. Not only is the country beautiful, but its location makes it easy to travel to Europe via a quick flight.

To ensure you have plenty of miles for your next trip to Ireland, check out the transferable point programs in American Express, Capital One, Chase, Citi, and Marriott Bonvoy. The points earned in these programs will help you to continually unlock value.

 


FAQ

Which Oneworld airline program offers the cheapest economy and business class to Ireland?

Japan Airlines is the program to use to book the cheapest Oneworld economy flights to Ireland.

For business class, you’ll want to also look at Japan Airlines to book the cheapest Oneworld flight to Ireland.

Which Star Alliance airline program offers the cheapest economy and business class to Ireland?

Asiana Airlines will be your cheapest option if you’re looking to fly a Star Alliance economy or business class flight.

Which SkyTeam airline program offers the cheapest economy and business class to Ireland?

Korean Air offers the cheapest SkyTeam economy and business class flights in this article. We also recommend checking the award pricing shown on Air France, Delta, and KLM.

Which non-alliance airline program offers the cheapest economy and business class to Ireland?

Aer Lingus is your cheapest economy flight option out of the airlines not in a major alliance.

Aer Lingus, Etihad, and Virgin Atlantic all have the cheapest business class option for nonstop flights to Ireland.

Michael McHugh

About Michael McHugh

Born and raised in Mobile, Alabama, Michael took his first international trip in 2013 with friends to the Bahamas. Although he didn't travel much in his younger years, on that trip, he caught the travel bug and has been hooked ever since. Michael first caught wind of the points and miles game in 2014 while at a bar in Washington, DC where the conversation amongst friends was quickly derailed because of an alert on a friend's phone about a mistake fare.  That's where the love affair with points and miles began.

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